Will foreign people end up using English as their 1st language?

Tiste   Saturday, October 23, 2004, 10:02 GMT
Since English has become so important these days , more and more languages are using 'loanwords' from the English vocabulary.
My question is : Will the whole world end up speaking English?

It might have a lot of advantages , or maybe not ...
How do you feel about this ?
blob   Saturday, October 23, 2004, 10:35 GMT
I don't see it happening myself, some Germans may fantasise about speaking English but anyway look at countries like Sweden. A lot of people learn English and speak it very well, but they still prefer to speak Swedish!
Sanja   Saturday, October 23, 2004, 18:05 GMT
I can see that maybe some day everyone will be able to speak English (in today's world you have to), but I don't think English will ever become everyone's native language or replace our native languages. I think everyone should prefer to speak his native language, but that doesn't mean we don't have to learn English. I love languages and I would maybe learn a few more, but it's kind of unnecessary if I already speak English, because that way I can communicate with the whole world.
Joe   Saturday, October 23, 2004, 20:03 GMT
I think English is increasingly becoming a tool for cultures to communicate with one another, however, it never will replace the native tongue.

The native language is more crucial to one's national identity and personality than anything else. While children may be taught English at a very early age, when they are around others that speak their same language, they prefer to speak their own language.

Look at the Dutch. The Dutch have had a history of speaking foreign languages, yet they still speak Dutch amongst one another. They don't speak English if they can speak Dutch. The same follows with Scandinavians. Almost all can speak fluent English, yet their native languages aren't going anywhere.
Easterner   Saturday, October 23, 2004, 20:26 GMT
Using English as a second language is completely different from a language shift. As I think of it there have been some language shifts in history, when a local language yielded to a dominant one, but always under some sort of political pressure. Some examples: Oscan/Gaulish/Iberian --> Latin, Coptic/Syriac/Chaldee --> Arabic, Irish Gaelic --> English (!). Nearly always the motive behind this was the social benefit of speaking the dominant language within an empire to avoid stigmatisation. At the moment there is no such pressure to use English in countries where English is spoken as a second or foreign language, and as it seems there won't be any in the near future. So even if the number of English loanwords may become more numerous in most world languages, I think most people will be happy to speak their native language and use English for communicating with foreigners, without mixing the two.
lucky   Saturday, October 23, 2004, 20:42 GMT
I think english is going to end up as world's 2nd language at most.

I can already see some people who publicly argue to take english as 1st language here. Besides that, this country is kind of crazy for learning english. I can't describe in detail now.

the main point I disagree is
1) It appears people think just one language will get rid of diversity of culture. Culture contains the way of people's thinking, behavior, living. people may fear about disappearance of identity along with their language.

2) We already know we can keep two language. we can speak two language at the same level if we start learning from babyhood. Who would give up their proud language while they are able to have all ?
Mxsmanic   Saturday, October 23, 2004, 21:34 GMT
If everyone were as fluent in English as they are in their native languages, the native languages would start to die out, and eventually everyone would speak only English. However, we are a long, long way from that situation today, and there is no guarantee that we will ever reach that state, as some other language might become popular before it happens. If English persists long enough and becomes widespread enough, though, eventually everyone will speak _only_ English. We probably won't live to see that in any case.
abc   Saturday, October 23, 2004, 22:38 GMT
We will all be forced to speak english and sent to concentration camps if we don't when america takes over the world.
Easterner   Sunday, October 24, 2004, 06:36 GMT
You use your own native language to interact with people of your own language community. You use English (or other international language) with speakers of a language different from your own. Do you think there will be a stage when you wil be forced to use English with members of your own community? For me that is highly unlikely (or it may be that I'm biased).
Tiste   Sunday, October 24, 2004, 12:34 GMT
A lot of languages have been wiped out , because another , more dominant one took place : some examples...

Native American languages -> not many of them survived
Cornish -> died out , because English took place

And these languages don't have a bright future ...

-Burgenland Croatian
-Molise Croatian
-Channel Island French
-Cypriot Arabic
-Crimean Tatar
-Scottish Gaelic
-Irish Gaelic
-Northern Frisian
-Eastern Frisian
-Western Frisian

I could go on , you know... ;)
Damian   Sunday, October 24, 2004, 13:45 GMT
<<And these languages don't have a bright future ...>>
To: Tiste the Pessimist:

Scottish Gaelic?
Irish Gaelic

Obviously you have no idea whatsoever about the depth of the Celtic character! I recommend you visit places like Caernarfon or Stornoway or County Galway sometime now or in the future.

FYI: Attempts to revive Cornish are taking place and although that language officially died with an old woman in the late 18th century, there is a small band of people, fiercely proud of their Cornish heritage, who are now fluent in the language, and do you know what? Their numbers are growing, albeit slowly. So there!

I can't, of course, speak on behalf of those other apparently "doomed" languages you mentioned, but I would guess they will not be consigned to history as easily as you predict, Tiste.

However powerful, influential or "dominant" my own native language of English becomes, speaking as a Scot, I have more faith in people's national pride and innate feelings of heritage to allow their languages, however minor, to become submerged and drowned in any English tidal wave. I love my language (well, I would, wouldn't I?) but not the idea that it will be responsible for the demise of ANY other. I've said this before in here.
Damian   Sunday, October 24, 2004, 13:48 GMT

There are already American concentration camps in existence, but I don't think there have any link to direct language issues.
Damian   Sunday, October 24, 2004, 13:50 GMT
<<I don't think there have any link>> : there=they
Damian   Sunday, October 24, 2004, 13:52 GMT
<<I don't think there have any link>> : there=they
Sanja   Sunday, October 24, 2004, 14:03 GMT
"Burgenland Croatian
Molise Croatian"

What kind of languages are that? I've never heard about them.
And as for Dalmatian, that is not a language, that is only one dialect of Croatian which is not a standard form and I don't think it will ever die out, because people from different parts of countries speak different dialects.